The Mamiraua Sustainable Development Reserve is seen in Uarini, Amazonas state, Brazil, May 16, 2016. REUTERS/Bruno Kelly
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Shallow wells dug for drinking water in the Amazon basin in order to avoid polluted rivers contain up to 70 times the recommended limit of arsenic, researchers warned Tuesday.Samples taken from 250 sites along the Amazon -- the first systematic analysis of the region's well water -- also revealed hazardous levels of manganese and aluminum, they reported at a conference in Vienna. In Bangladesh, where arsenic in well water has been a known health hazard for decades, the element is blamed for some 40,000 premature deaths each year.The health consequences of arsenic in groundwater can take years, even decades, to become apparent.The Amazon basin, drained by the Amazon River and its tributaries, covers some 7,500,000 square kilometers and is spread across eight countries.
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